The Complex Adaptive Competency Lab (CACL) is a collaborative effort of the College of Nursing’s Steele Innovative Learning Center (SILC) and Office of Learning and Healthcare Technology Innovations (LHTI), blending existing expertise in nursing education and practice with talent in instructional design and technology. Working together, the team studies and develops adaptive competencies and education strategies, select and acquire equipment and software, develop custom AR/VR solutions, and conduct pilots to evaluate the efficacy of these competencies, strategies, and technologies.

One project the CACL is working on is the Intelligent Simulation Environment (ISE) Project (Jan. 2022 – June 2022). This ISE prototype will integrate UA SensorLab resources (e.g. eye tracking, motion tracking, heart-rate variability, electrodermal activity) with mixed reality (MR), and artificial intelligence (AI) applications to promote complex adaptive competencies (CAC) learners need to meet 4th industrial revolution challenges. CACs involve successful and efficient implementation of evidence-based solutions resulting from individual or team augmented decision making. This decision-making requires accurate situation awareness (SA), seeking, synthesizing, and adapting information from multiple sources in dynamic technology rich contexts.

Additionally, the ISE will promote trapping error generating factors and mitigation strategies when errors occur. The principal project aim is to build UA SensorLab capacity and create an ISE prototype to facilitate future development of portable high-stakes domain specific XR simulations to assess and coach learner CACs. This project involves new collaborations between UA CON simulation, curriculum and technology specialists, Systems Engineering and Center for Digital Humanities (CDH), and SensorLab experts. The ISE aligns with the UAHS strategic plan by helping to prepare learners for the future and optimizing interactions between humans and technology to solve complex problems.